EDITORIAL- Pe question should be for courts, not Comelec

- The Philippine Star

It is good Team Rama has finally moved to question the candidacy of Cebu City councilor Jun Pe. But it would be better if Team Rama raised the question in court and not in the Comelec, as it intends, so as to put the matter to rest.

You see, Pe is now on his third and, according to the law, final term as councilor. In those three terms, Pe represented the north district of the City, being a resident and registered voter there.

But Pe has a funny notion about the law. He believes term limits have nothing to do with terms but are reckoned by one’s place of residence, such that if he moves from the north to the south, which is what he actually did, he can run again for another three terms.

Geographical representation (north and south in Cebu City) is circumstantial, meaning it depends on certain situations, like size. Not all cities are big enough to be broken into a north or south, or east or west for that matter. But all are covered by the same laws.

One such law is the one governing term limits. The same term limits on councilors apply regardless of whether a local government unit is a town or city, or whether it has two districts or a thousand and one.

In fact, the term “term limits” is self-explanatory and ought to be very clear to most people, especially to legislators who are supposed to know their law. The big wonder is why there is even a need to explain. But then again, it is only now that someone like Jun Pe came along.

If it still isn’t clear to Pe — and he can research this himself — all first references to him, whether written or oral, are always as Cebu City councilor: Cebu City councilor Jun Pe this and Cebu City councilor Jun Pe that.

Any mention of his district representation comes only as a secondary or third reference, and only if it is necessary to make the distinction. But always, always, without exception, the correct reference to Pe is Cebu City councilor and not north, or south, or southwest councilor.

In other words, Pe is a Cebu City councilor, period. That is how he must be defined for the purpose of determining term limits. If he is allowed this travesty, then Pe, who doesn’t look like he will ever be mayor, will only jump back and forth to perpetuate himself as councilor.

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